Skip to main content

Porto - Useful Information and Services

How do I go to the doctor? Where can I go shopping? Is the city safe? In Porto you have several spaces and infrastructures available that are very important for your life and well-being.

Health and Emergency Services

As in most European countries, the national emergency number is 112.

The two largest public hospitals in the city are the Centro Hospitalar Universitário de São João and the Centro Hospitalar Universitário do Porto, both with emergency services open 24 hours a day. Throughout the city, there are also clinics and health centres, public and private, some also with permanent assistance.

To seek assistance at the public service, the following documents are valid

  • Citizen's Card, for national citizens.
  • EHIC (European Health Insurance Card), for European Union citizens.
  • PB4, for Brazilian citizens. In this case, you will only have to pay a moderator fee.

If necessary, you can also contact the SNS24 line, available every day 24h/day, through the number 808 24 24 24 .

In the case of private health services, payment of the respective costs is required and a previously activated health insurance can be used.

Find out more about the SNS24

Security Services

The predominant public security forces in Porto are PSP (Public Security Police), which operates in urban areas, and GNR (National Republican Guard), present in less populated areas. You can ask for help through the same emergency number: 112.

There are other police forces, such as GNR-BT - GNR Traffic Brigade (responsible for car circulation), PJ - Polícia Judiciária (responsible for criminal investigation) and the Municipal Police.

Water and Cleaning Services

Piped water (from the tap) in Porto is drinkable and of high quality for consumption, guaranteed by the city's SMAS (Municipal Water and Sanitation Services).

The city is well provided with ecopoints and equipment for the disposal of undifferentiated waste, so it is up to each one of us to fulfil our role in the cleaning and management of waste!

Informações Turísticas e Apoio à Juventude

Por várias vezes distinguido como o melhor destino turístico europeu, o Porto recebe diariamente milhares de turistas. A vida na cidade, a oferta cultural e o património são fatores que ajudam na escolha do Porto como um destino de eleição. Também por isso, a cidade está empenhada em ter todas as infraestruturas e serviços de apoio ao turismo (visitas guiadas, tours, excursões, experiências gastronómicas, passeios de barco, degustação de vinhos, programas culturais, etc.), além de estar a reforçar a sua capacidade hoteleira.

No Porto tens opções de alojamento a vários preços e para diferentes estilos. Para encontrar a oferta adequada, basta pesquisares nos conhecidos sites de reservas online ou no portal Visit Porto.

O IPJ (Instituto Português da Juventude) presta apoio específico à juventude através da emissão de um cartão com inúmeras vantagens – o Cartão Jovem – e gere as Pousadas de Juventude, entre muitas outras atividades, publicações e projetos.

Tourist Information and Youth Support

Several times distinguished as the best European tourist destination, Porto receives thousands of tourists every day. The city life, the cultural offer and the heritage are factors that help in the choice of Porto as a destination of choice. Also because of that, the city is committed to have all the infrastructures and services to support tourism (guided tours, excursions, gastronomic experiences, boat trips, wine tasting, cultural programmes, etc.), besides reinforcing its hotel capacity.

In Porto you have accommodation options at different prices and for different styles. To find the right offer, you just have to search on the well-known online booking sites or on the Visit Porto portal.

The IPJ (Portuguese Youth Institute) provides specific support to young people by issuing a card with numerous advantages - the Youth Card - and runs the Youth Hostels, among many other activities, publications and projects.


Besides the University libraries, there are others with public access, generally coordinated by the Porto City Council.

The main libraries in the city are:

There are also municipal libraries in Matosinhos and Vila Nova de Gaia. The opening hours should be consulted with each institution.

Bookshops and Stationery Stores

As a literary city, Porto enjoys an enormous network of bookshops, antique booksellers and stationery shops, some of which are internationally renowned.

  • Lello Bookstore
  • Flâneur
  • Livraria Poetria
  • Bookshop Papa-Livraria
  • Livraria Académica
  • Booksellers Moreira da Costa
  • TimtimPorTimtim
  • Bookstore Chaminé da Mota
  • Araújo & Sobrinho Stationery Store

Among many others!

Tourist Information Offices

The tourist offices provide access to all kinds of services and information to visit and explore Porto, as well as maps.

Depending on your location, you can visit the various tourist information offices open to the public.


Famous for their intense commercial activity, the areas of Santa Catarina, Boavista and Cedofeita have a long tradition as shopping destinations. In the city centre and neighbouring areas, there are also shopping centres with free parking.

There is also the well-known Bolhão Market (currently under renovation) and the Bom Sucesso Market, transformed into a leisure area with restaurants and small shops. Small urban fairs and markets are also held in the city, such as the Vandoma Fair, the Porto Belo Market, the Flea Market or the Porto Handicraft Market.